Bring Back What The Kids Love

Written by Collin Cantrell

The Rivermont Baseball field banner. Photo by Collin Cantrell.

Sports have been and always will be a huge part of children’s lives. Over one year ago, COVID-19 took sports away from children in a way we never thought was possible. Evan Hughes, President of the Rivermont Youth Athletic Association, took action to ensure that children were able to safely live out their love for sports, despite the pandemic. 

Evan and Mason Hughes discuss the barriers they faced in order to bring baseball back. Photo by Collin Cantrell

March of 2020 was a very confusing and unexplanatory month for everyone, everywhere. After everything was shut down and everyone was put into quarantine, the only thing on anyone’s mind was, “When can I get out of the house?”

Evan Hughes worked diligently to bring back the youth baseball and softball leagues at Rivermont Park here in Chattanooga. 

All games and practices were shut down in March at Rivermont Park, but only a few short months later, Evan had the children back doing what they love. 

Hughes said, “After our spring season was canceled, we were actually able to move it to the summer.”

Obviously, this was a huge feat for Hughes for many reasons. He was able to bring back sports to the children that missed it. He was able to continue his business. And lastly, he was able to find a safe way for people to get out and be active.

Hughes said, “Everyone was ready to get out of the house, but we had to follow a strict list of guidelines and all of the protocol set by the CDC.”

This wasn’t easy by any means for Hughes, but he overcame and did was necessary for the love of the game. 

Sometimes, life can be just like sports. Life isn’t going to always go your way. You might get knocked down, but it’s all about how you respond to adversity. Evan Hughes responded to adversity and made it possible for children to get out of the house and learn lessons, while also playing the sports they love. 

Meet The Storyteller

Collin Cantrell is a Communication minor writing and producing audio for Rising Rock at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. His skills are shown from the many leadership positions he has held throughout college, including Student Body Vice President. Collin enjoys sharing his love of music with others by playing his guitar and singing. Collin loves hard and wants everyone to feel a sense of belonging. 

Contact him at

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